It feels like we just celebrated the holidays, but time is flying, and soon, it'll be time to start thinking about going to the beach! Want to make the most of your Ocean City experience this year? These beach hacks can make everything easier, cleaner, and more fun on your next visit.
1. Set a sunscreen alarm! Make alarms on your phone for every two hours so you know the time has come to reapply, even if you're napping or reading a really good book.
2. Keep electronics and valuables that you've chosen to bring to the beach with you safe by storing them in plastic food containers. They can easily be tossed into your bag and they'll keep the sand and surf out.
3. Don't let swimmer's ear get you down! Bring an un-inflated balloon in your beach bag so you can apply pressure to your ears if you happen to get water in them.
4. Tired of adjusting your umbrella as the sun travels across the sky? A mesh pop-up tent can help you escape from the harsh rays no matter what time of day it is.
5. Did you know parking is free in Ocean City Mon-Thurs during certain seasons -- including the spring? Head down the shore between April 1 and May 25, and you can park in many places without spending any money. It's $2 an hour Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.
6. Don't bother with expensive sunglasses on your beach trip -- keep them in the car or at home. There's plenty that can happen to pricey accessories when you're on the beach, from losing them to scratching them, so go with a cheap pair instead.
7. Even if you don't have a baby or board (or ever plan to), baby wipes will be your friend at the beach! Grab a pack of them so you can easily clean sand off whatever you need to.
8. You probably thought to bring water along, but bring some frozen water bottles with you as well! They will act as ice packs to keep other stuff cold, and you can drink from them as they melt, too.
9. There's never a trash can right where you need it to be, and no one likes chasing after plastic bags and packets -- and littering is a big no-no! Avoid the hassle by bringing an empty grocery bag along to keep the waste and toss it on your way off the beach.
10. Finally, before you get to the beach, chances are that you'll need to tangle with the Chesapeake Bay bridge! The renovations on the bridge have eliminated tollbooths, but the bridge can still get super busy. Try traveling early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid those big lines. The state website has suggestions for when to go depending on the day.